We already know that Apple likes to develop its own components. It brought chip production in-house with its A and M-series system-on-a-chip processors for MacBooks and higher-end iPhones. Now a new rumour suggests that it might be planning to do something similar with iPhone batteries.
It's been claimed that Apple could start producing its own iPhone batteries as soon as 2025. That could mean that they arrive in time for the iPhone 17 (assuming that Apple sticks to its usual schedule for new models; see our guide to the best Apple Black Friday 2023 deals for the best current bargains).
The Korean news site ET News claims that several industry sources have revealed that Apple is developing battery packs in a bid to offer “significantly improved performance". The main target would be the iPhone, but it may also use its own batteries for iPads and MacBooks, ET News says.
The site says that rather than improving battery life by increasing physical size, Apple is focusing on choosing materials that it hopes will optimise performance, stability, energy density and power output. It reportedly aims to create a kind of battery that “has never reached commercial use worldwide.”
There's no suggestion of how much the battery will be improved compared to the third-party batteries used in existing iPhone models. However, if the rumour is true and Apple does manage to improve efficiency in this way, it could mean a leap in battery performance from the iPhone 16 to the iPhone 17 (we don't know if the idea would be to use Apple-made batteries in every model).
As we noted in our iPhone 15 Pro review, we were already impressed with the battery life in the current Pro model, although we were a little concerned about how hot it ran. The iPhone 15 Plus and Pro Max offer even better battery life of up to around 14 hours. If the iPhone 17 can significantly improve on this, it will be quite something.
The introduction of Apple silicon in the form of the M-series chips has been a game changer for MacBooks and iPad Pros and Airs, offering stunning performance. By developing its own batteries, Apple could further set itself apart from the competition in the smartphone market too, although a major breakthrough in battery design will also be likely to provoke a leap in the wider market as other manufacturers seek to keep up.
Of course, we don't know if the rumour is true, and if it is, Apple will surely try to keep things under wraps for as long as possible since the suggestion that the iPhone 17 could offer a notable upgrade could encourage people to skip the iPhone 16 and wait until 2025. See below for the best iPhone 15 and iPhone 14 prices in your region. We also have a regular guide to the best iPhone 15 prices.